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Toronto police ID man killed in Yorkdale mall shooting

Dozens of officers investigating after 1 person killed, another injured

Posted: Mar 31, 2013 6:25 AM ET

Last Updated: Mar 31, 2013 6:31 PM ET

At least two guns were involved in a fatal shooting that left a man dead outside a busy Toronto shopping mall and another man wounded, police say.

Det. Rob North spoke with media on Sunday afternoon, saying that police had identified the man killed in the shooting outside the Yorkdale Shopping Centre the night before.

North said the victim who died at the scene was 23-year-old Michael Nguyen, whom the detective said was "known to police."

Police were called to the scene just after 8 p.m. on Saturday.

When officers arrived at the scene, North said they found one victim on the roadway outside the entrance to the Sears department store at the mall. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

North said the surviving 24-year-old victim was rushed to a Toronto hospital after being found outside a different mall entrance. He received treatment and is now in stable condition.

"He is expected to survive," North said.

Both men had "obvious gunshot wounds," when police arrived, North said.

North said he had few new details to release about the shooting Sunday, though he did say "we believe there was more than one firearm used in this occurrence."

Earlier Sunday, Const. Wendy Drummond tweeted that dozens of police officers were involved in the investigation into the shooting, which occurred about an hour before the mall was scheduled to close on Saturday.

Hours after the shooting occurred, North had told reporters that police were seeking "five or six suspects" in connection with the shooting.

"The initial confrontation began inside the mall," he said. "There were no shots fired inside the mall. The two groups of individuals left the mall and shots were fired outside of the mall."

At the latest news conference on Sunday afternoon, however, North said it was not clear whether the incident began inside or outside the mall.

North said he had "no indication" the incident was gang-related.

No weapons have been recovered by police at this point, North said.

"It's pretty crazy – I don’t know," eyewitness Michael Troya told CBC News, after the shooting.

Troya said the shooters "don’t have any morals and they don’t really care what happens or what people think about them."

Following the shooting, hundreds of vehicles remained cordoned off inside the mall parking lot as part of the investigation. However, on Sunday afternoon, a police spokesperson tweeted that all vehicles could be released "even those that were within the crime-scene."

At one point, all the mall exits were closed and hundreds of people were forced to remain inside the mall.

"Like all Torontonians, we were shocked by the incident that occurred," Yorkdale officials posted on the mall's Twitter feed, adding that "we take security at Yorkdale very seriously." In several tweets, mall officials thanked both the police and the public.

The mall, which is located along busy Highway 401, is popular with shoppers.

The official Yorkdale website says the mall "ranks as one of the highest performing shopping centres" on the continent. It has more than 200 stores, including the high-end retailers Tiffany & Co., Holt Renfew and Cartier.

The violence on Saturday night is not the first time that a shooting has occurred on the mall property.

In April 2009, a security guard was shot while attempting to arrest two robbery suspects. But he was wearing a safety vest that police credited with saving his life.

The incident comes almost 10 months after a shooting in the city's centre at the Toronto Eaton Centre in which one man died at the scene and another was fatally wounded and died in hospital days later. Five other people were wounded, but survived the shooting.

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